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Case Law

  • Ohio Dormant Mineral Act
  • Lipperman v. Batman - Ownership in mineral rights under the Dormant Mineral Act of 1989 were not abandoned because the look-back period is fixed and the mineral rights owner had filed an affidavit preserving her mineral rights during the look-back period.
  • Albanese v. Batman - Ownership in mineral rights under the Dormant Mineral Act of 1989 were not abandoned because the look-back period is fixed and the mineral rights owner had filed an affidavit preserving her mineral rights during the look-back period.
  • Wendt v. Dickerson -  Granting summary judgment to property owners was proper because defendants took no action related to their mineral interest and the 1998 Dormant Mineral Act applied, resulting in the mineral rights merging with the surface estate.
  • Pollock v. Mooney - Defendant's oil and gas royalty interest was properly extinguised because the root of title deed did not refer to any conveyance of a mineral royalty interest and the oil and gas royalty interest was not preserved or recorded.
  • Taylor v. Crosby - Trial court erred by granting summary judgment to the defendants because plaintiffs had not abandoned their mineral rights.
  • Tribett v. Shepherd - Under the 1989 version of the Dormant Mineral Rights Act, the deeds for transfers of surface and coal rights to others from grantees of defendants were not actual savings events because the mineral rights were not the subject of the title transactions.
  • Farnsworth v. Burkhart - It was error to hold the mineral rights had been abandoned because the trial court had incorrectly interpreted the 1989 Dormant Minerals Act regarding teh look-back period.
  • Dahlgren v. Brown Farm Properties L.L.C. - It was error to hold plaintiffs did not abandon their mineral rights by retroactively applying the newest version of the Dormant Mineral Act to a mineral interest that was deemed automatically abandoned and vested in surface owners under a previous version of the Act, which applied in this situation.
  • Eisenbarth v. Reusser - In action by property owners to declare defendants' mineral interest in property had been abandoned, trial court did not err in granting summargy judgment to defendants where their signing of a lease was a savings event, there was no abandonment and defendants were entitled to half of a bonus paid under an oil and gas lease.
  • Dodd v. Croskey - Under the 2006 version of the Ohio Dormant Mineral Act, an oil and gas interest “holder” that files a notice of preservation under R.C. 5301.56(H)(1)(a) in response to a surface owner’s notice of abandonment.The person who files protects the mineral interest from abandonment, even if the holder cannot show any “savings event” under R.C. 5301.56(B)(3).
  • M & H Partnership v. Walter Vance Hines - The 1989 Dormant Mineral Act has a 20 year look back period, meaning if the mineral rights were the subject of the transfer within the previous 20 years, they do not extinguish.
  • Quick v. Jenkins - Notice may be given to the owner of the mineral estate by publishing a news paper notification. 
  • Swartz v. Householder - The 1989 and the 2006 version of the DMA both apply, and because there was no savings event, the interest in the mineral estate automatically became owned by the surface owners. 
  • McLaughlin v. CNX Gas Company - The release of an oil and gas lease qualified as a title transaction, which preserved the mineral rights from abandonment under the 1989 DMA. 
  • Chesapeake Exploration, L.L.C. v. Buell - The Ohio Supreme Court will decide the following issues: is the expiration of a recorded lease a title transaction, and is the recorded lease of a severed subsurface mineral estate a title transaction under the DMA?
  • Corban v. Chesapeake Exploration, L.L.C. - The Ohio Supreme Court will decide the following issues: does the 2006 version or the 1989 version of the DMA apply to claims asserted after 2006 alleging that the right to oil, gas, and other minerals automatically vested in the surface land holder prior to 2006 amendments as a result of abandonment?
  • Oil and Gas Leases
  • Belmont Hills Country Club v. Beck Energy Corp. - Lease did not violate public policy because the habendum clauses and delay rental clauses did not operate to make the leases perpetual.
  • Bentley v. Beck Energy Corp. - Leases did not violate public policy because the habendum clauses and delay rental clauses did not operate to make the leases perpetual.
  • Kenney v. Chesapeake - Original contract terms provide duration where clause allowed lessees to extend or renew, but didn't contain a specific duration for the extension.
  • Marshall v. Beekay Co. - Oil and gas leases were still valid and in full force and effect as to all depths and all formations because there was continuous production in paying quantities for 15 shallow wells.
  • Covert v. Koontz - Oil and gas royalty interest was properly extinguished where the sale of royalty was not specifically stated or identified in either the root of title deed or in any of the records in the chain of title after the root of title deed, and no savings conditions preserved the interest under the Marketable Title Act.
  • Bernard Philip Dedor Revocable Declaration of Trust v. Res. Energy Exploration Co. - Defective acknowledgment with notary did not render lease unenforceable because plaintiffs expressed clear intent to be bound by the lease.
  • Yoder v. Artex Oil Co. - The oil company acted as a reasonably prudent operator when it included the landowner's property into the drilling unit on adjacent property.
  • Lauer v. Positron Energy Resources, Inc. - Oil and gas lease was terminated even though landowner was required to give notice of breach to defendants prior to bringing the action because defendants did not timely answer.
  • Mauger v. Positron Energy Resources, Inc. - Trial court erred in granting summary judgment because genuine issues of material fact existed as to whether the lease was terminated by its express terms or abandonment.
  • BK Builders, Ltd. v. E. Ohio Gas - A fact issue existed as to whether or not the Marketable Title Act created an ownership interest in plaintiff with respect to the subsurface rights.
  • Yoskey v. Eric Petroleum Corp. - In property owner's action claiming fraud by energy complany in inducing him to enter into oil and gas lease and seeking recission by asking to be restored to the status quo, trial court erred in granting summary judgment to defendants, reasoning that owner failed to meet rule for tender back of consideration; owner's claim necessarily included return of rental payments received, and there was sufficient offer to returen the money.
  • Blazek v. Reserve Energy Exploration - The court held the lease was valid even though the plaintiff argued it was void because it wasn't properly notarized, there was a material breach, the tort of fraud in the inducement, and the terms of the lease were unconscionable.
  • Gentile v. Ackerman - A title on record was sufficient under the Marketable Title Act. 
  • Walker v. Shondrick-Nau  - To make the mineral rights the “subject of” the title transaction, the grantor has to be conveying or retaining that interest; the mere mention of the mineral interest reservation in the deed did not make the mineral rights the subject of the conveyance.
  • Conny Farms Ltd. V. Ball Res., Inc. - If no written notice of transfer is given, the successor in interest does not have to pay on the lease.
  • Cole v. EV Props. - Leases can still be effective, even if they are not properly signed and notarized. 
  • Eastham v. Chesapeake Appalachia, L.L.C. - Lease gave oil and gas company the option of either extending the lease under its existing terms or renegotiate the lease under new terms. 
  • Price v. K.A. Brown Oil and Gas, L.L.C. - Doctrine of ratification did not preclude termination of the lease, and neither accepting free gas nor accepting de minimis royalty payments made it so the termination provisions were waived.  
  • Gardner v. Oxford Oil Co. - An assignment of all oil and gas rights does not constitute a novation; landowner does not have a duty to continue production after taking ownership of the well; using the well to provide gas to the buildings on the property is incidental to the purpose of the lease and thus is not operation.
  • Harding v. Viking Internatl. Resources Co., Inc. - A challenge to an assignment of a lease can still be made via a non-assignment clause even if assignment payments have been paid for 8 months. 
  • Bilbaran Farm, Inc. v. Bakerwell, Inc. - An implied duty to develop a property is not present if the contract specifically says that there is not an implied covenant to reasonably develop.
  • Bruzzese v. Chesapeake Exploration, L.L.C. - Contract terms such as "marketable title", "due dilligence", and "undevelopable" were not too vague for the contract to be unenforceable. 
  • Air Quality
  • Sierra Club v. Koncelik - Upheld the Air Toxic Rule (OAC 3745-114-01), which states that only air contaminants that pose a threat of "adverse human health effects" are required to be on the list of regulated air toxics.
  • EPA v. EME Homer City Generation, L.P. - The Supreme Court of the United States upheld the "good neighbor" rule, which makes states pay for the down-wind impacts of their air pollution on other states. 
  • United States v. DTE Energy Co. - The EPA can challenge a preconstruction projection of air emissions even before the final, actual air emission data is available. 
  • Water Quality
  • Oxford Mining Company v. Ally - An ERAC case will be heard by the 10th District Court of Appeals. This will affect Ohio EPA's wetland and stream impact permits throughout Ohio. 
  • Trespass
  • Other

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